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Respectable LivesSocial Standing in Rural New Zealand$
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Elvin Hatch

Print publication date: 1991

Print ISBN-13: 9780520074729

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520074729.001.0001

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The Criterion of Farming Ability

The Criterion of Farming Ability

Chapter:
(p.110) Chapter Six The Criterion of Farming Ability
Source:
Respectable Lives
Author(s):

Elvin Hatch

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520074729.003.0006

This chapter deals with the issue of farming ability. Farming ability was used in certain contexts to judge social honor. Most farmers display considerable concern about the way others regard their work. The conservative farmer believes that healthy, robust sheep are more profitable than smaller ones of lower quality. The conservative farmers contend that their progressive counterparts take extraordinary risks by maintaining such high stock numbers. Although the linked communities of Glassford, Midhurst, and South Downs are distinct reference groups, at a higher level they are also conjoined. A farm family draws its identity primarily from its standing in the home district; yet it can have a wider reputation and occupy a position in the broader status system of linked communities as well.

Keywords:   farming ability, Glassford, Midhurst, South Downs, farm family

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